We’ve arrived at Cowell just a bit too early for crabbing season, but it seems to be the place for blue swimmer crabs at the right time, which is any month with an ‘r’ in it.
Mind you we crossed paths with one traveller who told us they were being caught now in Cowell in August, but then again it is just a few days off September.
We are staying at the Foreshore Caravan Park in Cowell and this would be a boaties dream with direct access to the boat ramp, excellent fish cleaning facilities in the park and even crab cookers to hire to cook your catch.
Directly in front of the caravan park is the foreshore which has had a lot of money spent on development and is almost completed. A terrific family space, it has a water play park, playground, BBQs, a jumping pillow and lots of green grass to picnic on.
A new building sits a little further away which will be a café overlooking the boat marina and the jetty beyond that. The jetty is a bit of a hike even from the car park area but it is really wide and has lots of space for fishers to use. Sadly it didn’t provide anything for us this time and we were sceptical about our chances of catching squid as there were no telltale signs of ink on the jetty.
Luckily there’s more to Cowell than the fishing. The whole town is easily accessible from the caravan park and has a terrific supermarket, 2 hotels, a few bric-a-brac stores, cafes, a bakery and more. Cowell also has a painted silo just on the edge of town.
The Franklin Harbour Hotel is the closest to the caravan park and has a pet friendly deck outdoors which overlooks the foreshore area. It also has a very funky bar inside, clad in rainbow coloured pallet timbers.
From the caravan park you can also take a stroll on a boardwalk through the mangroves and down to the water, only a distance of about 800 metres return.
While you’re in Cowell make sure to take the Coastal Ketches Tourist Drive which takes you from Franklin Harbour to Port Gibbon, a distance of about 22 kilometres. Along the way there are spectacular white sand beaches to stop at for swimming or fishing and best of all, you can stay!
There are quite a few camp sites signposted on the low cliffs where you can stay for $10 per night. There are pay stations where you can pick up an envelope and deposit the fee for however long you intend staying, but there aren’t any facilities, so you have to be fully self contained. Public toilets are available at Port Gibbon and Cowell.
One look at the perfect white sand beach and crystal clear water is enough reason to bookmark this spot to revisit and stay a while.